Parents Discover Daughter Duct Taped to Chair at Daycare—What Would You Do?

child duct taped to chair at daycare

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First off, I want to state that we understand all day care workers are not like these psychos. In fact, caregivers are some of our favorite people in the world and we love the job they do of supporting parents everywhere. But there is a serious lack of oversight in this industry and stories like this are becoming way too common.

I’ve read stories of toddlers and babies being locked in back rooms to scream their hearts out for hours because the workers don’t want to deal with them, of sexual abuse, of emotional torment, and of babies dying after being left in car seats. This bad experience is just the latest in a long line of unforgivable stories.

I’m sure the statistics are that something like 99% of caregivers are genuine, but the times when caregivers are bad they are usually really, really bad. And I can’t help but thinking that if I were the type of person who wanted to hurt children, it would be so easy for me to get a job at a daycare center or school where I would have all the access in the world to hurt children.

The fear that something horrible might happen, and that my children may be hurt for life, and whether I’d ever be able to forgive myself if the individuals I left my children in hurt them, is what motivated me to become a work from home mom. It’s hard to want to take even a small risk of something going wrong with my children, especially when they are babies and toddlers. Especially when I suffer from an anxiety disorder.

My heart always bleeds when my friends and family members have to start leaving their babies to go back to work, sometimes as young as six weeks old. I definitely recognize how lucky I’ve been to be able to have a work from home gig. However, there are days when I am busy and finding a sitter is hard, and I do wonder about leaving my kids at daycare for a little while so I can get caught up on work or during a heavy call day. The convenience of being able to have a safe place to always leave your children is something I think every parent should have available to them, but how?

It’s every parent’s nightmare to find out that the people they’ve trusted to care for their children have mistreated them. That’s what happened to Elysha Brooks and Christian Evans, who received a picture from the Missouri Department of Children and Family Services of their four-year-old daughter duct-taped to a chair with the caption: “Thought I was playing.”

Apparently, one of the teachers at Little Learners of Florissant daycare duct-taped their daughter to a chair, took a picture, and then posted it to Snapchat. Brooks shared the photo on Facebook last week, saying that she had just learned about it from DCFS, though it’s believed that the incident happened in back in March.

“I’m looking at a picture of my daughter duct taped to a chair and her facial expression — I can just imagine how she felt,” Brooks said in an interview with Fox2 news. “Seeing your child duct taped to a chair, seeing the anxiety, seeing how scared your kid is, knowing for one that you’re not there to protect them and knowing for two that you have people around that would stoop to that level, to even hurt your child, puts you in a crazy mind state,” said Evans.

Yes. Yes, it does. This makes us both unspeakably sad and fills us with the red-hot rage of a thousand suns. How on earth does someone taking a job working with kids think that this kind of thing is appropriate? And what kind of unthinking monster also takes a picture of it, posts it to Snapchat, and tries to turn it into a joke?

No one who should have kids in their care, that’s who.

The daycare, meanwhile, hasn’t responded to any media requests for comments. That’s probably a good call on their part because Brooks and Evans are making sure that this gets seen to:

“I won’t be happy until that daycare is shut down, for one, and whoever did this to my child . . . she needs to be in jail,” Evans said.

It’s a sad reminder that not everyone who works with children is going to treat them the way they should, and that we as parents need to do all the homework we can before picking a place to leave our kids.

So  here are my questions for you, how do you get over the guilt of having to leave your child at daycare when you have to work?

What tricks or tips do you have for really vetting your caregivers?

Do you have any tips or tricks for teaching young children, especially babies and toddlers who can’t communicate well yet, about boundaries and how to communicate if they don’t feel safe or if something bad does happen?

Finally, what would you do if something like this happened to your child while they were in a caregivers hands?

Please, share with us in the comments below.